I talk to a Hereford United fan and find out whether they’ll be going up, down or nowhere this season in League Two.
Tell us a bit about your season last season firstly. Would you say it was a success or failure? Did you achieve anything throughout the season, and were the fans happy with the end result?
For a first season back in the league, I’d say it was ok. We were there to consolidate our position in the league and we did it! The run towards the end of the season was awful but then beating teams like Coventry, Port Vale, Swindon, and Mk Dons is always great. To be honest, I was just happy we weren’t in a relegation battle at the end of the season.
Obviously every close season sees players leave. Who left your club and were you happy with the decision to let those players go by your boss?
Tamika Mkandawire – Couldn’t do anything to stop him, excellent central defender who has been excellent since he started at Hereford, a big team was always going to come in for him sooner or later.
Rob Purdie – A player you either love or hate, always seemed to play really well in a game or be completely anonymous. His best position was definitely at left back. Overall, a good utility player to have but too lightweight for midfield.
Simon Travis – Always gave 110% and performed well without ever excelling, disappointed to see him go but he can be replaced.
Alex Jeannin – Never really rated him to be honest, glad to see him go. A hot headed left back who often got caught out.
Tim Sills – He tried but alas he failed. League two is a level too high for him, easily replaced.
Phil Gulliver – Big strong centre back who looked poor earlier in the season but came good towards the end of it. However, not one of our best players so not too disappointed to see him go.
Alan Connell – I liked Alan a lot, a skilful and creative player who was often benched (for Sills!) and played out of position but still scored some important quality goals.
Andy Williams – A local lad who went to my primary school, very skilful and still very young. He didn’t score too many last season but he will get a few in league one if he can calm his temper. I’m sorry to see him go.
Stuart Fleetwood – A very quick and skilful player who became ill and couldn’t get his form back. He will score loads in the conference with Forest Green this year. Should have been given one more year in my opinion.
So obviously, with players going out, some have got to come in. Who has come in for you, and do you expect them to do well? Tell us a bit about these lads?
Trevor Benjamin – I’ve only heard bad things about him but I think Turner can get the best out of him, he will get around 10 goals this season which is ok for a target man.
John McCombe – Big centre back who sounds like a Gulliver type player but much quicker, keep an eye on him.
Karl Broadhurst – Experienced centre back who has played a shed load of games for Bournemouth. However, they’ve never been great defensively so we’ll see how he does.
Lionel Ainsworth – Young, skilful winger from Derby. I’ve only heard good things about him during pre season so I expect very big things from him and hopefully he’ll chip in with a few goals himself.
Clint Easton – Experienced midfielder who can play a number of roles, I think he’ll do well.
Kris Taylor – Highly rated young left midfielder who will be effective but may not steal the limelight.
Steve Guinan – The legend returns! A true fans’ favourite and he’s played here before. His link with Ben Smith will be crucial and I expect him to bag a lot of goals this season.
Theo Robinson – A young striker on loan Watford who appears to be promising, I’ve heard mixed things but I think he’ll come good.
Toumani Diagouraga – Skilful midfielder who has promise but never seems to have settled anywhere. I am confident he’ll be a corker.
Chris Weale – Keeper on loan from Bristol City, he sounds solid but will ultimately be an understudy for Wayne ‘Superman’ Brown.
Who are going to be your star players this season then? Who`s going to get the goals, and who`s going to stop them?
Ben Smith, Steve Guinan and Wayne Brown will star once again. I would look out for McCombe and Ainsworth as young starlets though. Guinan will score a load and Benjamin will reach double figures. Wayne Brown will be chief stopper when he returns from injury.
Season ticket sales help the club at the beginning of the season to stabilise the place and give it a bit of extra income. How many season tickets have your club shifted these season so far, and what do you expect the average attendance to be throughout the season?
No idea to be honest! With the mixture of young and experience this season, Turner has created an exciting side and I fully expect the average attendance to be slightly higher than last year around the 3,500 mark.
Tell us a bit about your gaffer and his backroom staff. Do the fans like the gaffer, or can you see him being out of a job after a run of bad results?
Graham Turner is the club’s saviour but obviously everyone has mixed opinions on him. However, I think even the anti Turner brigade will be excited by this year’s squad of players.
This question is split into two. What do you BELIEVE your club can achieve this season, and what do you HOPE your club can achieve this season?
I believe we can finish around mid table but I hope we can finish near the final playoff place.
Finally, whom do you expect to win the division, who do you think will go up with them and who do you think will be relegated?
Bradford to win it with MK Dons and Darlington going up automatically. I think Stockport will win the playoffs. Accrington and Macclesfield will go down.